Investing in Innovative Water & Energy Saving Technologies
Funding for the Water Energy Technology Program was not included in the 2014-2015 legislative session. Launch of this program is suspended until funds are available.

In response to California's drought, Governor Brown's Executive Order B-29-15 outlines bold steps to save water, increase enforcement of water use standards, streamline the state's drought response, and invest in new water energy technologies. To accelerate the deployment of innovative water and energy saving technologies and reduce greenhouse gas emissions, the California Energy Commission, jointly with the Department of Water Resources, and the State Water Resources Control Board, will implement a Water Energy Technology (WET) program to provide funding for innovative technologies that meet the following criteria, contingent on legislative approval of funding:

  • Display significant water savings, energy savings, and greenhouse gas emission reductions
  • Demonstrate actual operation beyond the research and development stage.
  • Document readiness for rapid, large-scale deployment (but not yet widely deployed) in California.
  • Technology must be commercially available.
  • Funds must be used in existing facilities.

Examples of eligible innovative WET program technologies:

  • Agriculture: Rebates for conversion from a high pressure to a low-pressure drip irrigation system meeting specific minimum performance criteria for: water flow meter; air vents/pressure relief valves; sand media filters; high efficiency pumps and motors; variable frequency drive motor controls, and other requirements stated in the WET Rebate Guidebook. In addition, competitive grants will be available for custom innovative agricultural projects with on-site GHG emission reductions and water savings.
  • Industrial/commercial: Competitive grants will be available for advanced industrial/commercial technology solutions that save water, reduce onsite energy use, and reduce GHG emissions. For example, proposals may include integrated on-site water reuse and heat recovery systems; packaged/modular wastewater treatment systems; and no-water or low-water use technologies for process operations, laundries, food service, and industries and businesses with high water consumption.
  • Residential: Integrated onsite water reuse and heat recovery systems that save water and have net, on-site energy and GHG emission reductions.
  • Water treatment and recovery and desalination: Improvements to existing plants that reduce on-site GHG emissions and energy use, while increasing water production, such as the use of high efficiency, advanced membranes.

How is the program administered?

Working in partnership with the Department of Water Resources, the Water Resources Control Board and other experts, the California Energy Commission is developing the program eligibility and application process. Projects must have direct water savings, direct energy savings, and reduce greenhouse gas emissions. In addition, projects must reduce water use or improve water production.

What is the schedule?

The program kick-off is suspended until funds are available.

How can I get more information?

Please sign up on the Energy Commission's WaterSaver listserv using the 'Subscribe' box on this page.
Also, please sign up for the Energy Commission’s Opportunity listserv at

The Energy Commission has set up a WaterSaver idea exchange docket, accessible from this webpage. The purpose of the docket is to record your ideas and suggestions and also provide an opportunity for networking among those that send emails to this docket. Note: the WaterSaver idea exchange docket is for information only.


Water Energy Technology (WET) Program E-mail:

Members of the News Media:
Please contact the Media and Public Communications office at 916-654-4989.



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